Scotland Street Press – Publisher Profile

Cover Stories from Belarus
Cover Stories from Belarus
When did you start publishing?

2014

What made you want to start an independent publisher?

I had published a book with Random House and FSG in New York, and they did not want the companion volume, so without even prudently asking around I decided to set up an indie. (needless to say four years of full-on, unpaid, uphill learning has caused some moments of regret at rashness of decision)

What genres do you specialise in?

Memoir, autobiography, literary fiction and poetry

Where are you based?

Edinburgh

Do you have a submission window, if so when?

Not yet. We get too many without advertising.

What is your submission procedure?

Writers tend to make requests from the website.

Who are you (team photo if possible)?

We are currently Jean Findlay, head of publishing, Andrew Lindsay, sales and marketing, Lucrezia Gaion, intern, Valentina Auletta, Erasmus Trainee, and Megan Richie, one month internship.

Background in the book industry?

Jean has a lifetime working in literature of some sort: playwright, arts journalist, author. Andrew Lindsay has an MSc from Napier University in Publishing and experience in sales at Blackwells. Lucrezia works at the Broughton High School library and every trainee or intern who comes on board brings original ideas and self taught enthusiasm.

Talk about some of your books if possible?

We are proud to be the first to translate a book from the Belarusian language into English, for which we won a Pen Award. Belarusian is spoken by two thirds of the population in that country but the official language is Russian. The publisher in Minsk was shut down for publishing books in Belarusian and we had to buy the rights through Lithuania. Books written in an oppressed language are a hidden treasure. Tania Skarynkina’s book of essays, A Large Czeslaw Milosz with a Dash of Elvis Presley, is a cocktail of world literature seen from a forgotten town in a forgotten country. Her own photograph as the cover image can be seen as a metaphor for a country where the pig is king and where those who wear their hearts on their sleeves may have it skewered. (attached)

From Corsets to Communism by Jenny Robertson is a literary biography of Zofia Nalkowska, a Polish novelist who is regarded as one of the leading anti fascist writers of the last century. Her slim volume Medallions is on the reading list for Holocaust Studies in US universities. We know little of her here in the UK , being rather inward looking in our literary interests. This is her first biography written in English. Witness to two world wars and Poland’s struggle for independence, Zofia Nalkowska was a woman in a man’s world and rose to international fame as a novelist touring a war torn Europe.

and future projects/dreams if you can?

We have a new poetry list: Macsonnetries by Petra Reid is a feminist rewriting of all of Shakespeare’s sonnets for the iPhone age, some in Scots.

Aspects of Edinburgh by Stewart Conn with drawings by John Knight is a calm and meditative reflection on the city
Inside and Out – paintings by Christian Small with poems by Gerda Stevenson has just been featured on BBC Woman’s Hour and is a full colour art book.

Burds in Scots by Hamish MacDonald is poetry in Scots and paintings from long ago.
We have just won another PEN Award for a Belarusian novel.

Some photos please: Photo of Liz MacWhirter author of Carnegie Nominated Y/A novel Black Snow Falling, when she came to the office to sign books and was helped by the latest addition to our staff: Rita the puppy, who now deals with all our Twitter needs. Feel free to take photos from Twitter feed.

Website/Facebook/Instagram/Twitter
@scotstreetpress
www.scotlandstreetpress.com